Friday, November 21, 2008

At The Scene Of The Accident

I was probably 16 or 17, maybe coming back from the tv station with my friend Ray Rackiewicz, along the twisting River Road from Shelton to Stratford, in Connecticut. As we came around a curve, there was a garbage truck flipped over on the river side of the road.

It’s been many years, but I seem to recall he was in great distress and kept saying, “I don’t want to die, I don’t want to die.” A black fellow of some size and I’m not sure if there was a fire at the scene. But it was bad.

Ray and I did not want to just stop, gawk and leave. We felt we should be there, helpless but present. You just don’t leave someone while waiting for an ambulance to show up, which one did in due time.

On the lower corner of next day’s paper was a piece about the man, who did not make it. He was a prominent member of his church community and of his ethnic community. A good guy who took care of people and should have gone in a better manner than next to a garbage truck lying on its side.

Everybody has a story.
Jockey Frank Hayes had a fatal heart attack in the middle of a 1923 race. Legend has it his nag went on to cross the finish line first. If true, that would make him the only dead jockey to ever win a horse race.


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